Periodization is the process of breaking up athletic training into separate phases, each focusing on specific aspects of the overall training program. Ultimately, the objective of high performance training is to improve athletic performance during competitions. All sports, both individual and team, have either 1, or several, major competitions per year (individual sports – track and field, gymnastics) or a season with many competitions per year (team sports – soccer, hockey). This part of an athletic training program is called the Competitive Phase. At Soccer Fitness, all other phases of training are structured around the athlete’s Competitive Phase. The competitive phase in youth soccer in Canada consists of approximately 16 weeks, from the middle / end of May to the middle / end of September. The entire 32-week off-season training period (October to April) is broken up into 4 separate 8-week training phases. Soccer Fitness’ On-Field / Power Running, Treadmill, and Plyometric Training programs are all planned and periodized to fit into this 32-week off-season training period, and to facilitate optimal/peak physical fitness in time for the start of the competitive phase.
Athletes training under the supervision of a Soccer Fitness Trainer have the advantage of knowing that they are training with a purpose, and that they will only train those components of physical fitness which are relevant to their current phase of training / competition.
The Soccer Fitness On-Field / Power Running, and Strength and Conditioning Training programs are both periodized with the ultimate aim of helping all athletes reach peak physical condition for the start of the outdoor season in May, as well as to help them maintain their physical fitness through to the end of the season in September. In the charts below, we provide detail as to how the training programs are broken up, and how each cycle of training fits into the overall annual plan for the athlete: